“Already at the age of 24, as an unemployed person, son of Božidar Vuksanović bought properties worth nearly a quarter of a million euros. In two years alone, the Vuksanović family became the owners of properties whose purchase cannot be explained by officially reported income.”

Author: Dejan Milovac (MANS Investigative Centre)

The family of a long-time public official, Božidar Vuksanović, spent over 270,000 euros in two years for the purchase of several properties, which is money that was not reported in the official reports on income and assets. An apartment and a garage were bought under the name of the eldest son, Bojan, as well as business premises in Podgorica, while Vuksanović registered the land in Žabljak under his own name, on which there is a chalet today.

​Vuksanović said that he did not wish to comment on the documents of the MANS Investigative Centre and that what he had reported to the competent authorities was correct. He also briefly said that the purchase of his son’s properties was a “matter of inheritance”. However, data from the website of the Agency for Prevention of Corruption (APC) show that during the period when they were buying the properties, the Vuksanović family did not report the existence of any inheritance from which the said properties could have been financed.

The documentation obtained by the MANS Investigative Centre shows that in early 2008, Bojan Vuksanović bought an apartment of 156 square meters and a garage in the building next to the temple in Podgorica from the company “Normal Company”, for which he spent the amount of 171,600 euros. The son of the public official was 23 years old at the time, and was registered as an unemployed person in his father’s assets record. At the end of that year, Božidar Vuksanović bought a plot of land in Žabljak with an area of 200 square meters which he paid 22 thousand euros.

Extract from the purchase agreement stating that Vuksanović bought an apartment from the company “Normal Company” back in 2008

Already the following year, Vuksanović Jr. concluded another purchase agreement with the same construction company, this time for a business premises in the settlement Stari Aerodrom, with an area of 129 square meters. The contract states that it is a real estate under the so-called “rough construction works”, and that Vuksanović Jr. already paid the contracted amount of 78,600 euros.

None of these transactions were reported to the competent Commission for Prevention of Conflict of Interest back then, although there was a legal obligation to do so. It is not known from which funds the purchase of real estate worth over 270 thousand euros was financed, because the Vuksanović family neither had reported savings or inheritance during that period, nor did they report the existence of loans that would serve this purpose.

Vuksanović reported the purchase of real estate in Žabljak to the Commission only in 2011, when he also registered a chalet on the plot, the value of which has been unknown so far. On the other hand, the purchase of an apartment and business premises was never reported to the competent authorities, and after 2011, Božidar stopped reporting his elder son as a member of the household.

In 2012, Vuksanović Jr. was registered as the owner of the properties he bought from 2008 to the end of 2009, after he left his father’s household.

Vuksanović earned close to 74 thousand euros from his business with the Post

In the period from 2014 to 2021, “Montenegro Post” concluded several lease agreements for business premises that Bojan Vuksanović bought in Stari aerodrom settlement in Podgorica. The documentation on individual payments obtained by the MANS Investigative Centre thanks to the Law on Free Access to Information, shows that the Post paid the Vukanović Jr. a total of close to 74 thousand euros based on the lease of business premises, and that the monthly rent ranged from around 600 to 1000 euros.

One of the agreements shows that after purchasing the business premises in the so-called “grey phase” from the company “Normal Company”, he completed all the craft works, and that the business premises had been fully functional before they were leased to the “Montenegro Post”.

Positions of Božidar Vuksanović

In the period from 2008 to 2010, when transactions which he did not report to the competent authorities were carried out, Božidar Vuksanović was a member of the Parliament of Montenegro. In addition to that position, Vuksanović was the director of Bureau for the Execution of Criminal Sanctions (appointed in 2005), but also a member of the board of directors of “Post of Montenegro”. Vuksanović was appointed to the position of director of the Customs Administration in mid-2009, where he worked until 2011, when he was appointed acting director of the Police Directorate.

MANS asked for checking of children’s property after leaving the household

In the first half of this year, as part of the Working Group of the previous convocation of the Parliament of Montenegro which worked on amendments to the Law on Prevention of Corruption, MANS proposed for public officials to declare assets and income for their spouses and children, regardless of whether they are members of the household or not.

Currently, the Law on Prevention of Corruption stipulates that officials report assets and income to APC only for household members, i.e. most often spouses and children who live with them in the community. Such provision enables the children of public officials to most often acquire property upon leaving the household, or buy a property or a vehicle in the same year when the official ceases to register them. In practice, transactions of this type went unnoticed by APC, but also hidden from the public.

Due to all of the above, in the draft amendments to the Law on Prevention of Corruption, which is still awaiting the opinion of the European Commission and holding of the public hearing, the proposal of MANS to amend the provision on household members from the current law in such a way that in the future, officials will report the income and property of the spouse and children regardless of whether they live with them in the community or not, was included. Such solution, if adopted, will enable more specific control of APC and reduce the scope for manipulations in the form of hiding (the origin) of assets.



Komentari su isključeni.